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Discussion Starter #1
This weekend I had the opportunity to ride an 1198. Amazing bike is all I can say. I felt like I was living that scene from "Independence Day" when Will Smith was flying the alien spaceship and he said "I have got to get me one of these!".

About a half hour later I got on my ST3 for the ride home and immediately I felt its mass. Never felt that before, always thought it was much closer to a sportbike, got on the gas and was surprised how unresponsive it felt - again I always felt it was very responsive.

I thought about all of this on the hour ride home and I was happy my ST was so comfortable and confident on the open highway. I motored along merrily and as I drove I appreciated the the bike more and more for what it is, a sports touring bike. As I said I used to think it was closer to a sports bike but now I realize how far away from a true sports bike it really is. I used to think about projects to improve its performance and its handling, now I like it just the way it is. That is not to say that I will not consider upgrades in either of those categories, just not as important now.

The 1198 is an awesome bike and there is likely no way to turn our STs into something that can compete with them in a sports bike arena, however the ST shines as an all around great bike that handles the twisty roads with confidence while offering a great ride down the long interstate.

IMO it is still the perfect #1 bike for me, hands down better at this niche than any other bike out there.

I guess the point of my post is that it took a ride on an 1198 to help me to better appreciate the ST3 for what it is. :)

Randy
 

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Keep in mind that an 1198 is a bit more than your average sport bike! I'll bet if you climbed on a 996 after riding an 1198, you'd have similar thoughts. A well set up ST is pretty close to a good sport bike. All the elements are there. It still comes down to the rider.

Comparing anything to an 1198 is probably a bit unfair!
 

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Mr Leakered
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I was able to take a spin on a 1098s a few weeks back. I came away different feelings about the ST, compared to yours, but the same conclusion.

Yes, the power of the 1098s was nutty at just a few RPM. I know that it would take me many miles to ever think of getting to the 13k rev limit. Then, there's the radial monblock brakes. Gawd, it was a lovely ride.

Considering there was almost 50hp more on tap and a 100lb diet, I got back on my bike and instantly felt the lineage and soul in both bikes. We rode around for a few more hours. Neither of us could use much of either bike's capability on the road, but we both had a great time.

I still feel that the ST is mainly limited by me. The brakes always work in an instant, on-ramps are a blast through 3rd gear, and twisties make me smile.

I'm still 100% happy with my ST. If I were ever to have a second bike, would an SBK be on the short list? Hell ya, but the HM and S4R would share that same top spot. ;)

BTW, was the stock exhaust note just about about perfect? I could follow that 1098 all day just listening to the music coming out of the pipes. I wonder how those bikes pass the noise standards? Of course, the owner upgraded to the Termi slip-on / ECU package since then. I can't wait to hear that soundtrack.

Have a good one.
 

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Mr Leakered
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Keep in mind that an 1198 is a bit more than your average sport bike! I'll bet if you climbed on a 996 after riding an 1198, you'd have similar thoughts. A well set up ST is pretty close to a good sport bike. All the elements are there. It still comes down to the rider.

Comparing anything to an 1198 is probably a bit unfair!
I never rode a 996, though I'd never turn down that opportunity. It was amazing how much more comfortable the 1098s was over that owners previous 999.

I only rode the 999 on a wet day, so I can't really compare it to anything except for comfort. The 1098 felt natural where the 999 felt cramped.

Have a good one.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The 1198 I rode was completely stock.. I was amazed how quickly I felt comfortable with the bike. I even blew around a guy on an 848 that had no clue how to go around corners :D

At one point I had to haul it down quick and it was amazing how confidently it came to a stop. Throttle response was fast but very controllable.

I also felt that the 1198 was very comfortable to ride, the seat and position of the rearsets, clip-ons ahd the usual feel after 15 minutes of riding but I was too pumped to worry about that. I'm 6'3" and I expect to be cramped but I was not. Did feel like I was over the front end of the bike a bit however.

If I had one of those I'd have to hit the track every weekend I could.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I'm sorry if you got that impression, actually I said I don't think they can compete with the 1198 and that I was happy with the kind of bike they are. And while your pictures are impressive they still don't speak to an ST competing against an 1198.
 

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I'm sorry if you got that impression, actually I said I don't think they can compete with the 1198 and that I was happy with the kind of bike they are. And while your pictures are impressive they still don't speak to an ST competing against an 1198.
I just like posting those pictures. ;) :D

I can only imagine the difference between an ST and a new 1098 or 1198. There's a pretty big contrast between my ST2 and the 748......and worlds of difference between the two and my wife's older R1.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I would love to get my ST on a track and find my limits. As Tonered says the limit will likely be with me and not with the bike.

Randy
 

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I would love to get my ST on a track and find my limits. As Tonered says the limit will likely be with me and not with the bike.

Randy
I took mine last Spring and it was a blast. I highly recommend it. I'll be going again late this summer or fall.
 

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Boy, you express my thought exactly. There are days that I love my ST2, there are days that I yearned for something more. Ducati, please bring back the ST and stuff either the 1098 or 1198 motor in it!!
 

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Mr Leakered
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The 1198 I rode was completely stock.. I was amazed how quickly I felt comfortable with the bike. I even blew around a guy on an 848 that had no clue how to go around corners :D

At one point I had to haul it down quick and it was amazing how confidently it came to a stop. Throttle response was fast but very controllable.

I also felt that the 1198 was very comfortable to ride, the seat and position of the rearsets, clip-ons ahd the usual feel after 15 minutes of riding but I was too pumped to worry about that. I'm 6'3" and I expect to be cramped but I was not. Did feel like I was over the front end of the bike a bit however.

If I had one of those I'd have to hit the track every weekend I could.
I'm just a scosche over 6ft. I did feel the instrument cluster was a bit too close as I couldn't see anything in my perifieral vision. I generally like to see needles in my periferal vision and the numbers with an eye movement only. I understand, with you being taller, that over the front feeling.

The one difference between the 999 and 1098 that I really liked was the saddle. The 999 seemed to have maybe a position and half to work with. The 1098 allowed me to ride by the tank or move back and up considerably to stretch out, what I'd consider 3 positions.

One fingers stops are just unreal. That was the one warning I got (more like a beg). Using four fingers would have been certain trouble.

Have a good one.
 

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Thanks for your candid thoughts. I might have to try out a 1098 or 1198 some time. Sounds like fun.
 

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I could not believe how well the 1098 handled when I took one for a test ride. It was so comfortable compared to any other sports bike ...ever tried an RSV!!
My speed triple handles way better than my St apart from fast sweepers.

I still believe though that my St needs some proper set up with suspension. The St has way more than enough power than I need and does its job very well. Its a sports tourer and I can ride with sports bikes and keep up no problems. Its so comfortable for long trips and economical to boot. Fuel consumption on the 10 or 1198 is horrid plus I would not keep my license.

Its my fantastic all round bike and it aint getting traded.
 

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What other bike will go around a track comfortably with bags on!...



PS: Wasn't a real track day. Just a few laps around PIR on a special event day. :D
 

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Hello, newbie here. First off,this is a fantastic site. I have just acquired a 1998 St2 and look very much towards riding it, which unfortunately won't be for a couple of months. But, possession is 9/10ths of the battle. Your comparisons of the St2 and the newer models make me wonder how much of a difference I am going to feel going from a 1978 Suzuki Gs-1000s to the St2. I feel that I am in for culture shock, both power wise and especially handling wise. Will try not to do new dumb things here. Thanks, all.
 

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After 5 years and 110,000 kms on my ST2 I decided I really wanted an 848 so in September 2008 I bought a red 848 and fitted a white sticker kit, protective film, tinted screen and carbon fibre rear hugger. It looked superb ! I could not, however, bring myself to parting with the ST2 as I had so many wonderful memories of this bike and our many trips to MotoGPs and Turismos over the years. I was so glad I didn't let it go as I unfortunately crashed the 848 on my way to Brisbane after only 5000 kms and the bike was a write-off. I also suffered a smashed left humerus, # ribs, sternum, sacrum, coccyx and T12 in the spine. Although I don't remember anything about the crash, I put it down to a long day (600 kms) in extreme heat and dehydration and loss of concentration.
This is where the difference in the 2 bikes became very clear. I could ride 1000 kms on the ST2 and arrive fresh as at the end of the day but the 848 was not a long distance touring bike and unfortunately I learnt my lesson the hard way. Horses for courses - 848,1098,1198 for short trips and track days, the brilliant STs for the long distance stuff ( but still having fun in the twisties !).
 

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Yeah.....you're right. The ST bikes completely suck as "sport" bikes....




Owning BOTH I can confirm that they do NOT compare. ;) My ST is great but lacks the lean angle and stability of my 999. You have to remove the center stand (as in the pic) and raise the pipes above the "normal" mounts we all run with bags otherwise guys like me grind things they don't want to. I can still get head shake on the ST accelerating hard from corners that a steering damper would help. Still a FANTASTIC bike...but NOT a superbike. :cool: Yes, my suspension has been fully set up on both.
 
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